Pope's Morning Homily: A Church That Becomes a Place of Business Is Scandalous

“There are two things that the people of God cannot forgive: a priest attached to money and a priest who mistreats people. This they cannot forgive!" These were the words of the Holy Father during his morning Mass at Casa Santa Marta…

Doesn’t that make it impossible for the people of God to Pray the Lord’s Prayer?

12 And forgive us our debts, As we also have forgiven our debtors;


Sorry, I forgot to include a link for this. It was in a Zenit e-mail which quoted from:
Pope at Santa Marta: Keeping God’s Temple clean

The unforgivable nature of someone using the Church as a means to wealth and comfort is not the same as not forgiving someone who has wronged you.

In the prayer and in the Pope’s statement, the words are used in two different ways.

In this context, “this they cannot forgive” simply means that this is something they should not tolerate. Not that they should hold a grudge against them for all eternity.

This must be a non-US, non-European thing, because you’d be insane to try to become a priest here/there for “comfort.”

I somehow find this troubling myself. I’ve taken graduate business classes with priests and have never found them taking such courses to be inappropriate. In fact, they are to be complemented for being responsible to the needs of the parish and the diocese. But I’m sure to many it looks like they’re in it just for the money or promotion.

Maybe he meant* will not tolerate* rather than will not forgive. It would appear that many of his comments have either been poorly expressed or mistranslated into English. However, it would seem that as the universal teacher it is his responsibility to correct this problem. Until he does people will feel ever more justified in ignoring his statements unless they bear an explicit imprimatur.

I’m pretty sure he’s not talking about legitimate Church financial matters. He’s talking about those priests who put a price tag on everything, including attending Mass, Sacraments, etc.

I encountered one of those priests when I was young. Because my family was poor I got the impression that we weren’t welcome. Heck, he even said as much during one Homily, where he told everyone that if they didn’t pay at least 10% of their income to the Church they shouldn’t bother coming to Mass. There was also an informal price sheet for the “big” Sacraments, Mass offerings, funerals, etc.

That happens, true. 50-60 years ago it wasn’t unusual to have a collection box in back of the Church requiring you to drop in a set amount (I think it was like 25 cents) before you entered the pews.

Here families were billed a pew fee. I found a letter that my great-grandmother wrote complaining about them. She commented that the priests act like money grows on bushes. :smiley:

He didn’t say God couldn’t forgive.

The Pope is addressing the greed for money, not its proper management. I suspect that business management is never mentioned in the formal training of priests. A priest from Ireland once told me that he had never managed a checkbook until he was assigned as an assistant in a parish here.

In the military there are formal schools [squadron officer school, War college, etc] for training officers before they are promoted to greater responsibilities. A similar system seems appropriate for priests and bishops. One learns a lot by observation while in lower ranks, but some of it is probably wrong.

I read it in a different language.
He doesn t say " must not forgive " but " cannot " . In other words people do not find it easy to forgive and we cannot let that happen without addressing it.
He is referring to priests ,lay people , secretaries who mistreat people and " trade " sacraments for money.,basically " commerce". Out of greed or wordliness.His concern is pastoral.
He does not make any reference to the basic understanding of how to run a parrish for the common good.
Sounds like addressing what any logical catholic person would address.
I can copy paste Aciprensa in Spanish if you want to translate the link.It is a catholic source

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